Is it possible to live in such a way to be pleasing to God? For some, this sounds like an impossible goal. Yet, it is possible to walk in a way that’s pleasing to God. Consider what the apostle Paul said in 1 Thessalonians 4:1-2: “Finally then, brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus, that as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God (just as you actually do walk), that you excel still more, for you know what commandments we gave you by the authority of the Lord Jesus.”
Let’s make some observations from these verses.
“…Brethren, we request and exhort you in the Lord Jesus.” Paul urged and encouraged the saints to do this. Why was this so important to Paul and to the saints? Because they had turned from idols to the living God (1 Thessalonians 1:9-10). What about us? We should be urging and encouraging one other to walk in the proper manner. Is our walk an encouragement to other Christians? The world is not going to encourage us. Let’s urge one another to walk in worthy manner.
“…That as you received from us instruction as to how you ought to walk and please God…” Instructions had been given to the Thessalonians about how to walk in a way well-pleasing to God. They needed to be taught what would be pleasing to God. They gladly received these instructions from Paul. In (1 Thessalonians 2:13) Paul said, “For this reason, we also constantly thank God that when you received the word of God which you heard from us, you accepted it not as the word of men, but for that it really is, the word of God, which also performs its work in you who believe.” What about us? Are we allowing the apostles and prophets to teach us how we ought to walk? Are we listening to the Holy Spirit and His word to live in a way pleasing to God? Our Creator doesn’t leave us in the dark about what He wants from us. We just must be willing to receive it.
“…(Just as you actually do walk)…” The Thessalonians were hitting the mark! They were walking in a way pleasing to God. They were more than listeners of the word. They were doers of the word (James 1:19-27). If they could do it, we can do it as well. This should bring us great comfort. It’s also a reminder of the importance of how we listen to the word. Let us not be merely hearers of the word, but doers.
We will revisit this passage in future blogs Benjamin Lee